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Keep this skunk-bath recipe handy

I remember reading a skunk story several years ago in the Mail Tribune, and in it you guys printed the ingredients of a kit to keep in the house on the off-chance that your dog has a smelly encounter with a skunk. At the time, I didn't have a dog, or I would have put one of those kits together. But I have a dog now, and news that a co-worker's dog got on the wrong end of a skunk this week reminds me that I really need to get that kit put together. Can you print the ingredients again?

— J.K., Medford

Yes, J.K., we at Since You Asked Central often get asked about this nose-saving concoction that comes to dog owners from the rosy-smelling cubicle of Rich Landers, outdoors columnist for the Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, Washington.

Landers wrote about the kit several years ago after one of his dogs stuck his nose where the sun doesn't shine on a certain mammal and got a good spraying. And like us, Landers also is asked regularly to reprint the recipe.

The concoction came from Eastern Washington University chemistry professor Jeff Corkill, who mailed a clipping to Landers from a chemical trade publication where a group of unheralded chemists gave the world one of the greatest gifts since penicillin — a cheap, effective treatment for a skunk-sprayed dog.

Landers recommends dog owners keep a set of these ingredients and instructions stowed in their car so they don't have to drive a smelly dog home for treatment. But it would pay to keep one around the house, as well.

He say not to pre-mix them. Create the concoction after you discover your dog has been sprayed.

The ingredients are hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, liquid soap and a clothespin.

Step 1: Mix 1 quart of hydrogen peroxide with one-fourth cup of baking soda and 1 teaspoon of liquid soap.

Step 2: Put the clothespin on your nose, and apply the mixture liberally to your dog's coat, using a washcloth around the face to keep the solution out of its eyes, then walk him or her past the homes of your least favorite neighbors for five minutes or more.

Step 3: Rinse.

Step 4: Take the clothespin off your nose and breathe normally again.

Step 5: Bathe the dog again with a pet shampoo if Step 4 didn't go as well as planned.

— Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.